Tag Archives: reading

100 (OR SO) BOOKS I HEARD IN 2016

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Author Image  100 (OR SO) BOOKS I HEARD IN 2016

I have written 8 books personally.  (See my author profile (https://www.lulu.com/spotlight/pan)   I also edited and published the international best selling book Alien Interview. (Get this audiobook FREE)

As a writer I am a reader.  I usually read (or re-read) at least 100 books a year.  I am 70 years old now and have developed severe arthritis is my neck which prevents me from reading printed books.  So, I download and listen to audiobooks from AUDIBLE.COM. I have discovered the experience of audiobooks to be much more satisfying than reading printed books.  What can be better than a well written story read to you by a professional voice talent?!  Anyway, I want to share with you a list of audobooks I listened to during 2016.  As you can see from the list my preferences lean heavily toward Fantasy, Science Fiction, Metaphysics and History.  Each book is a universe created by the “author gods” of Earth: universes of infinite imagination and fascination.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Book 5  THE HARRY POTTER SERIES (7 books) by J.K Rowling

Chapterhouse Dune  DUNE  (6 book series by Frank Herbert)

Ashley Bell  ASHELY BELL by Dean Koontz

Neverwhere  NEVERWHERE by Neil Gaiman  (second reading)

THE REPUBLIC OF PIRATES: BEING THE TRUE AND SURPRISING STORY OF THE CARIBBEAN PIRATES by Colin Woodard  The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down

Bag of Bones  BAG OF BONES by Stephen King

The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes  THE IMPROBABLE ADVENTURES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES by John Joseph Adams (editor) , Robert J. Sawyer , Christopher Roden , Michael Moorcock , Anne Perry , Neil Gaiman , Anthony Burgess , Laurie R. King

THE DIAMOND AGE by Neal Stephenson

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World  GHENHIS KHAN AND THE MAKING OF THE MODERN WORLD By Jack Weatherford

Red Rising  THE RED RISING TRILOGY by Pierce Brown

Hunted: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 6  THE DRUID CHRONICLES (8 books) by Kevin Hearne

How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe  HOW TO SAFELY LIVE IN A SCIENCE FICTIONAL UNIVERSE by Charles Yu

Proven Guilty: The Dresden Files, Book 8  THE DRESDEN FILES (15 books) by Jim Butcher

Fated: Alex Verus Series, Book 1  ALEX VERUS SERIES by Benedict Jacka  (7 books)

The Sudden Appearance of Hope  THE SUDDEN APPEARANCE OF HOPE by Claire North

The Everything Box: A Novel  THE EVERYTHING BOX by Richard Kadrey

Spell or High Water: Magic 2.0  MAGIC 2.0 (3 book series) by Scott Meyer

THE AERONAUT’S WINDLASS: THE CINDER SPIRES, BOOK 1 by Jim Butcher

The Many Selves of Katherine North  THE MANY SELVES OF KATHERINE NORTH by Emma Geen

THE CHRONICLES OF ST. MARY’S (book 1 and 2) by Jody Taylor

Ready Player One  READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline

Tesser: A Dragon Among Us: A Reemergence Novel, Book 1  TESSER, A DRAGON AMONG US by Chris Philbrook

JONATHAN STRANGE AND MR. NORRELL by Susanna Clarke

THE DIRTY STREETS OF HEAVEN: BOBBY DOLLAR by Tad Williams  The Dirty Streets of Heaven: Bobby Dollar, Book 1

SLEEPING LATE ON JUDGEMENT DAY: Bobby Dollar BY Tad Williams

THE HIKE by Drew Magary

WHERE THE HELL IS TELSA: A NOVEL by Rob Dircks

The Android's Dream  AGENT TO THE STARS by John Scalzi

THE ANDROIDS DREAM by John Scalzi

ZEN AND THE ART OF MOTORCYCLE MAINTENANCE by Robert M. Pirsig

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  ALL OF THE BOOKS OF DOUGLAS ADAMS (re-read for the 4th or 5th time)  Life, the Universe, and Everything: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Book 3

THE GODMAKERS by Frank Herbert

AWAKEN ONLINE by Travis Bagwell

SURVIVAL QUEST: WAY OF THE SHAMAN SERIES (1 and 2) by Vasily Mahanenko

No Good Dragon Goes Unpunished: Heartstrikers, Book 3  HEARTSTRIKERS (3 book series) by Rachel Aaron

WIZARD DEFIANT: INTERGALACTIC WIZARD SCOUT CHRONICLES by Rodney Hartman

THE LEGEND OF ELI MONPRESS (5 book series) by Rachel Aaron  The Spirit Thief

WAKE OF VULTURES: THE SHADOW BOOK 1, by Lila Bowen

THE SHEPARD’S CROWN by Terry Pratchett

Watchers  WATCHERS by Dean Koontz

SOLARIS by Stanislaw Lem

The Mote in God's Eye  THE MOTE IN GOD’S EYE by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle

We Are Legion (We Are Bob): Bobiverse, Book 1  WE ARE LEGION (WE ARE BOB) BOBIVERSE BOOKS 1 AND 2 by Dennis E. Taylor

BY THE LIGHT OF THE MOON by Dean Koontz

Columbus Day: Expeditionary Force, Book 1  COLUMBUS DAY: EXPEDITIONARY FORCE (book 1) by Craig Alanson

HOW MANY BOOKS HAVE YOU READ?

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In human experience, written symbols (letters, numbers, musical signs, etc. ) are physical representations of an idea or thought.  Symbols organized into sentences, songs, compositions, formula,  articles or books convey many complex ideas.  These symbols enable communication between people in the physical universe.  Although there a many forms of non-physical communication which we refer to as “emotion” or “telepathy” or “empathy” or “intuition” or “knowing”, the common denominators of human experience or culture is often expressed in books.  When these have been read, understood and compared to other thoughts, we can assume points of view of the various universes we inhabit. When we agree on a our perception of these universes, we call this “reality”.

Which books have helped to shape your reality?  How many books have your read in your life, so far?  How many more books are on your “must read” list?  According to Google, that is busily scanning every book they can get their digitizing hands on, there are about 130 million book titles in the world.  There are more than 2 million NEW book titles published every year (in all languages) . There are approximately 8 billion people in the world.  That is more than 65 book titles per every person in the world.  So, theoretically every person needs to read a minimum of 65 books to reach an “average” level of literacy.  Of course this does not include the avalanche of words available to read that have not been organized into an actual book title, like Twitter and Facebook posting, newspaper and magazine articles and other “non-literature” such as scientific papers, and school textbooks and other propaganda published by governments and corporations.

The largest bookseller on-line is Amazon.com, which has an inventory of only about 1,750,000 titles in English.  That’s only 13 percent of all the book titles  in the world!  This a critically small number of books available to read.  How can one possibly consider themselves to be a literate person?  This does not even include the fact that the majority of books written in the ancient world (prior to 400 AD) were burned by the Christian church!  If you read one book every week 50 for years you would have read only 2,600 books!  According to Google, the average book is 300 pages.  That’s about 75,000 words per book.

As a writer, I am also a reader.  I have often read several books each week during the 50+ years of my reading life, as well as a lot of  printed material, etc.. All together I estimate I’ve read about 4,000 books, so far.  That’s a lot of words — not including the millions of words on the internet — that are not in the form of a book.  Fortunately, there are more than 100,000 book titles available as spoken books — narrated for you by professional actors — on  Audible.com, Librivox.com and sites on the internet.  Now, I can “read” a book with my ears, instead of my  eyes, a fact that I appreciate more and more as I grow older.  I can “read” while I’m walking, driving, jogging, cooking, cleaning, waiting and doing a lot of things that would prevent me from reading with my eyes.  It’s a wonderful age we live in!

So, how do we select the most cherished, life-giving, knowledge-quenching word droplets from the ocean of words?  Having read more than my share of books I can say without any doubt that reading a lot of books does not  make a person “smart”, or “wise”, or “literate”.  However, for me, reading books is usually a more gratifying experience, mentally and spiritually, than watching television or movies or videos.  Books are usually more thoroughly researched, planned, crafted, edited and perfected than other forms of communication.

In this electronic age, when more books are available to us — thanks to digital technology —  than during all of the history of humankind combined, can we expect that humanity would be more well informed and intelligent that ever before?  Books themselves are not wisdom.  If books are not read by people, the knowledge contained in them remains hidden.  They might has well not have been written.

My personal recommendation for your reading or listening book list are the books I’ve written, of course. My view of “reality” is different than most.  My universe is unique, as is yours.  I invite you to share my universe, through my books.

— This blatant self-endorsement is brought to you by Lawrence R. Spencer —